Explores the Information Communication Technologies used in the athletic footwear and sports apparel industry

Nike Livestrong: Chalkbot for Tour de France

With its philanthropic work, Nike takes its corporate responsibility in the community seriously by encouraging and making social changes through means of sports. For years, Nike has been working with world cycling champion and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong and advocating the Lance Armstrong Foundation that supports people affected by cancer. Promoting its motto “LIVESTRONG“, Nike has collaborated with the Lance Armstrong Foundation in launching the yellow LIVESTRONG bracelet as well as actively supporting the Tour de France event to raise awareness of the fight against cancer. Using its innovative technology, Nike’s Cancer-fighting Chalkbot campaign at the Tour de France event has been a major success.

The Chalkbot is a printing vehicle that prints messages “on the pavement in water-soluble paint.” These messages are submitted by the public via SMS, Twitter, Web Banners, and the Nike Livestrong website. Each message, with a 40-character limit, is sent to the Chalkbot and printed on a section of the cycling course. Simultaneously, the message is “photographed, tagged with GPS coordinates and emailed” to the message writer as a confirmation and souvenir. During the course of the Tour de France, the Chalkbot posted over 36,000 messages and helped raise $4 million for the Lance Armstrong Foundation in 2009 alone.

Among other things, Nike successfully managed to create a link between mobile, social, and web media as well as integrate digital media from the virtual realm with real-time events in the physical world using Chalkbot. Furthermore, Nike helped create a virtual cancer support group by utilizing social media to communicate, collaborate, and share content with the existing online users that already have a strong presence in the digital sphere. This creative use of social media in conjunction with the physical Chalkbot significantly amplified the word of mouth effect and enhanced the online user experience. In the process, Nike not only increased cancer awareness and built synergy in the community but also effectively gained recognition as a leading community-based socially responsible company.

To make a difference in the fight against cancer, submit your inspirational Chalkbot message here.

References: LIVESTRONG.com, Nike’s Chalkbot Checks Into Tour de France, Cannes Cyber Favourite: Nike Chalkbot

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